Publications by authors named "Lijun Zhang"

625 Publications

Molecular characterization of Glaesserella parasuis strains isolated from North America, Europe and Asia by serotyping PCR and LS-PCR.

Vet Res 2021 May 12;52(1):68. Epub 2021 May 12.

IRTA, Centre de Recerca en Sanitat Animal (CReSA, IRTA-UAB), Campus de la Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 08193, Bellaterra, Spain.

Glaesserella parasuis strains were characterized by serotyping PCR, vtaA virulence marker Leader Sequence (LS)-PCR, clinical significance, and geographic region. Overall, the serovars 4, 5/12, 7, 1, and 13 were the most commonly detected. Serovars of greatest clinical relevance were systemic isolates that had a higher probability of being serovar 5/12, 13, or 7. In comparison, pulmonary isolates had a higher likelihood of being serovars 2, 4, 7, or 14. Serovars 5/12 and 13 have previously been considered disease-associated, but this study agrees with other recent studies showing that serovar 7 is indeed associated with systemic G. parasuis disease. Serovar 4 strains illustrated how isolates can have varying degrees of virulence and be obtained from pulmonary, systemic, or nasal sites. Serovars 8, 9, 15, and 10 were predominantly obtained from nasal samples, which indicates a limited clinical significance of these serovars. Additionally, most internal G. parasuis isolates were classified as virulent by LS-PCR and were disease-associated isolates, including serovars 1, 2, 4, 5/12, 7, 13, and 14. Isolates from the nasal cavity, including serovars 6, 9, 10, 11, and 15, were classified as non-virulent by LS-PCR. In conclusion, the distribution of G. parasuis serovars remains constant, with few serovars representing most of the strains isolated from affected pigs. Moreover, it was confirmed that the LS-PCR can be used for G. parasuis virulence prediction of field strains worldwide.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13567-021-00935-9DOI Listing
May 2021

Expression and Function of ZEB1 in the Cornea.

Cells 2021 Apr 16;10(4). Epub 2021 Apr 16.

Department of Medicine, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY 40202, USA.

ZEB1 is an important transcription factor for epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and in the regulation of cell differentiation and transformation. In the cornea, ZEB1 presents in all three layers: the epithelium, the stroma and the endothelium. Mutations of ZEB1 have been linked to multiple corneal genetic defects, particularly to the corneal dystrophies including keratoconus (KD), Fuchs endothelial corneal dystrophy (FECD), and posterior polymorphous corneal dystrophy (PPCD). Accumulating evidence indicates that dysfunction of ZEB1 may affect corneal stem cell homeostasis, and cause corneal cell apoptosis, stromal fibrosis, angiogenesis, squamous metaplasia. Understanding how ZEB1 regulates the initiation and progression of these disorders will help us in targeting ZEB1 for potential avenues to generate therapeutics to treat various ZEB1-related disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cells10040925DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8074155PMC
April 2021

Immune activation during brain infection in African infants with frequent cytomegalovirus co-infection.

iScience 2021 Apr 23;24(4):102351. Epub 2021 Mar 23.

Center for Neural Engineering, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA 16801, USA.

Inflammation during neonatal brain infections leads to significant secondary sequelae such as hydrocephalus, which often follows neonatal sepsis in the developing world. In 100 African hydrocephalic infants we identified the biological pathways that account for this response. The dominant bacterial pathogen was a species, with frequent cytomegalovirus co-infection. A proteogenomic strategy was employed to confirm host immune response to and to define the interplay within the host immune response network. Immune activation emphasized neuroinflammation, oxidative stress reaction, and extracellular matrix organization. The innate immune system response included neutrophil activity, signaling via IL-4, IL-12, IL-13, interferon, and Jak/STAT pathways. Platelet-activating factors and factors involved with microbe recognition such as Class I MHC antigen-presenting complex were also increased. Evidence suggests that dysregulated neuroinflammation propagates inflammatory hydrocephalus, and these pathways are potential targets for adjunctive treatments to reduce the hazards of neuroinflammation and risk of hydrocephalus following neonatal sepsis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2021.102351DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8065213PMC
April 2021

Clinical Significance of an IgM and IgG Test for Diagnosis of Highly Suspected COVID-19.

Front Med (Lausanne) 2021 12;8:569266. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Department of Neurology, Shenzhen Hospital, Southern Medical University, Shenzhen, China.

Nucleic acid detection and CT scanning have been reported in COVID-19 diagnosis. Here, we aimed to investigate the clinical significance of IgM and IgG testing for the diagnosis of highly suspected COVID-19. A total of 63 patients with suspected COVID-19 were observed, 57 of whom were enrolled (24 males and 33 females). The selection was based on the diagnosis and treatment protocol for COVID-19 (trial Sixth Edition) released by the National Health Commission of the People's Republic of China. Patients were divided into positive and negative groups according to the first nucleic acid results from pharyngeal swab tests. Routine blood tests were detected on the second day after each patient was hospitalized. The remaining serum samples were used for detection of novel coronavirus-specific IgM/IgG antibodies. The rate of COVID-19 nucleic acid positivity was 42.10%. The positive detection rates with a combination of IgM and IgG testing for patients with COVID-19 negative and positive nucleic acid test results were 72.73 and 87.50%, respectively. We report a rapid, simple, and accurate detection method for patients with suspected COVID-19 and for on-site screening for close contacts within the population. IgM and IgG antibody detection can identify COVID-19 after a negative nucleic acid test. Diagnostic accuracy of COVID-19 might be improved by nucleic acid testing in patients with a history of epidemic disease or with clinical symptoms, as well as CT scans when necessary, and serum-specific IgM and IgG antibody testing after the window period.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmed.2021.569266DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8071939PMC
April 2021

The Ratio of IP10 to IL-8 in Plasma Reflects and Predicts the Response of Patients With Lung Cancer to Anti-PD-1 Immunotherapy Combined With Chemotherapy.

Front Immunol 2021 12;12:665147. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Department of Oncology, The Fifth Medical Centre, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing, China.

Antibodies against checkpoint inhibitors such as anti-programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) and its ligand anti-programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) have shown clinical efficacy in the treatment of multiple cancers. However, there are only a few studies on biomarkers for these targeted immunotherapies, especially in peripheral blood. We first studied the role of interferon-induced protein-10 (IP10) combined with interleukin-8 (IL-8) in peripheral blood as a biomarker of immune-combined chemotherapy for lung cancer and multiple cancers. We used the high-throughput cytokine detection platform and performed bioinformatics analysis of blood samples from 67 patients with lung cancer and 24 with multiple cancers. We selected the ratio of IP-10 to IL-8 (S2/S0, ratio of changes at 10-12 weeks after treatment to baseline) to predict the response to immunotherapy combined with chemotherapy and evaluate the survival of lung cancer patients and mixed cancer patients. In patients treated with the combination therapy, the specificity and sensitivity of IL-8 and IP10 together as predictors were improved compared with those of IL-8 and IP10 alone. Our conclusion was verified in not only lung cancer but also multiple cancer research cohorts. We then further validated the predictive effect of biomarkers in different histologic types of NSCLC and chemotherapy combined with different PD-1 drug groups. Subsequent validation should be conducted with a larger number of patients. The proposed marker IP10 (S2/S0)/IL-8 (S2/S0), as a predictive immunotherapy biomarker, has broad prospects for future clinical applications in treating patients with multiple intractable neoplasms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2021.665147DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8072287PMC
April 2021

Stress cardiomyopathy: Medical studies and extensive review.

Saudi J Biol Sci 2021 Apr 14;28(4):2598-2601. Epub 2021 Feb 14.

Department of Cardiology, Jinan People's Hospital Affiliated to Shandong First Medical University, Jinan, Shandong 271199, China.

Stress cardiomyopathy (SC) was first reported in the year 1983. It is narrated as critical but quite commutative left ventricular (LV) malfunction mostly caused by poignant or psychological disorder. Numerous variations of SC have been described as well as reverse stress cardiomyopathy (rSC) which is an adaptation identified by the decreased muscle movement related with hyperkinesis that reconciles impetuously. The signature of rSC is a medical demonstration alike to syndrome by an acute coronary, with no obvious difficult coronary artery disease. The occurrence of SC is approximated to be 4% of all victims conferring with gleaned syndrome by acute coronary. The portion of victims conferring with the rSC transfiguration out of all SC patients has been inconstant, varying from 1 to 24%. Reverse stress cardiomyopathy cases are found to be common with young people, less decrease in left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) and more neurological disease compared to the SC. While the correct phenomenon of rSC is undetermined, postulated methods comprises of coronary microvasculature impairment, coronary artery spasm, and estrogen deficiency. Patients with rSC typically suffer with chest pain after an emotional or Psychological stressful event. The rSC can also be happened by general anesthesia, or neurological conditions. The diagnosis of rSC demands the presence of new electrocardiogram (EKG) abnormalities or elevated cardiac troponin, and absence of obstructive coronary disease, pheochromocytoma, or myocarditis. The consideration of rSC is quite analogous to that of SC, which is predominantly supportive with the treatment of complications. The recrudescence rate of rSC is around 12%. The most frequent complications of rSC include pericardial effusions, and development of LV thrombi.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.sjbs.2021.02.003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8071884PMC
April 2021

Daphnetin Preconditioning Decreases Cardiac Injury and Susceptibility to Ventricular Arrhythmia following Ischaemia-Reperfusion through the TLR4/MyD88/NF-Κb Signalling Pathway.

Pharmacology 2021 Apr 26:1-15. Epub 2021 Apr 26.

Department of Cardiology, Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University, Cardiovascular Research Institute of Wuhan University, Hubei Key Laboratory of Cardiology, Wuhan, China.

Background/aims: Daphnetin (7,8-dihydroxycoumarin, DAP) exhibits various bioactivities, such as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities. However, the role of DAP in myocardial ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury and I/R-related arrhythmia is still uncertain. This study aimed to investigate the mechanisms underlying the effects of DAP on myocardial I/R injury and electrophysiological properties in vivo and in vitro.

Methods: Myocardial infarct size was measured by triphenyltetrazolium chloride staining. Cardiac function was assessed by echocardiographic and haemodynamic analyses. The levels of creatine kinase-MB, lactate dehydrogenase, malondialdehyde, superoxide dismutase, interleukin-6 (IL-6), and tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) were detected using commercial kits. Apoptosis was measured by terminal deoxynucleotidyl-transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labelling staining and flow cytometry. The viability of H9c2 cells was determined by the Cell Counting Kit-8 assay. In vitro, the levels of IL-6 and TNF-α were measured by quantitative PCR. The expression levels of proteins associated with apoptosis, inflammation, and the Toll-like receptor 4/myeloid differentiation factor 88/nuclear factor kappa B (TLR4/MyD88/NF-κB) signalling pathway were detected by Western blot analysis. The RR, PR, QRS, and QTc intervals were assessed by surface ECG. The 90% action potential duration (APD90), threshold of APD alternans, and ventricular tachycardia inducibility were measured by the Langendorff perfusion technique.

Results: DAP preconditioning decreased myocardial I/R injury and hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R) injury in cells. DAP preconditioning improved cardiac function after myocardial I/R injury. DAP preconditioning also suppressed apoptosis, attenuated oxidative stress, and inhibited inflammatory responses in vivo and in vitro. Furthermore, DAP preconditioning decreased the susceptibility to ventricular arrhythmia after myocardial I/R. Finally, DAP preconditioning inhibited the expression of TLR4, MyD88, and phosphorylated NF-κB (p-NF-κB)/P65 in mice subjected to I/R and cells subjected to H/R.

Conclusions: DAP preconditioning protected against myocardial I/R injury and decreased susceptibility to ventricular arrhythmia by inhibiting the TLR4/MyD88/NF-κB signalling pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000513631DOI Listing
April 2021

A study of the sequential treatment of acute heart failure with sacubitril/valsartan by recombinant human brain natriuretic peptide: A randomized controlled trial.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2021 Apr;100(16):e25621

Department of Cardiology, Tianjin Union Medical Center, Tianjin, China.

Abstract: This study aimed to investigate the effects of the basic treatment for heart failure and sequential treatment with rh-brain natriuretic peptide (rhBNP) alone or the combination of rhBNP and sacubitril/valsartan. Cardiac structure, pulmonary artery pressure, inflammation and oxidative stress in patients with acute heart failure were evaluated.Three hundred patients with acute heart failure were included. According to the random number table method, the patients were divided into 3 groups of 100 patients per group: the standard treatment group (treated with an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor, β receptor blocker, and corticosteroid antagonist), rhBNP group (basic treatment combined with rhBNP) and sequential treatment group (basic treatment for heart failure combined with rhBNP followed by sacubitril/valsartan). The changes in NT-probrain natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels, cardiac troponin T (cTnT) levels, cardiac structure, pulmonary artery pressure, and the levels inflammatory factors and oxidative stress factors were compared among the 3 groups at 1, 4, 12, and 36 weeks after treatment.The sequential treatment group displayed superior outcomes than the standard treatment group and the rhBNP group in terms of left atrium diameter, left ventricular end diastolic volume, left ventricular ejection fraction, pulmonary artery pressure, NT-proBNP levels, and cTnT levels, which respond to damage to the heart structure and myocardium. This result may be related to the decreased levels of inflammatory factors and the correction of oxidative stress imbalance.Sacubitril/valsartan significantly reduce the serum levels of inflammatory factors in patients with acute heart failure while decreasing the levels of oxidizing factors and increasing the levels of antioxidant factors. These changes may be one of the explanations for the better cardiac structure and better pulmonary artery pressure observed in the sequential treatment group.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000025621DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8078236PMC
April 2021

An integrated strategy for the establishment of a protoberberine alkaloid profile: Exploration of the differences in composition between Tinosporae radix and Fibraurea caulis.

Phytochem Anal 2021 Apr 20. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

College of Pharmacy, Hubei University of Chinese Medicine, Wuhan, Hubei, China.

Introduction: Accurate species and content identification of major active components in herbals are the guarantee of the safety and effectiveness for medical and commodity purposes.

Objectives: In this study, an integrated strategy used to establish the protoberberine alkaloid profile was applied to explore the differences in composition between the pieces of Tinosporae radix and Fibraurea caulis, both of which had morphological similarities.

Materials And Methods: First, an in-house library including possible protoberberine alkaloids based on different substituents was predicted by systematic literature survey. Meanwhile, diagnostic fragments of protoberberine alkaloids were investigated using the corresponding standards. Second, ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UPLC-QTOF-MS/MS) was used to obtain multidimensional mass spectral data. Then, the identifications were confirmed by targeted filter of the acquired data based on the library.

Results: As a result, 10 protoberberine alkaloid molecules including 46 isomers were identified or characterised. The qualitative distribution and relative content of protoberberine alkaloids revealed the fundamental difference between Tinosporae radix and Fibraurea caulis. 25 alkaloids were present in both herbals, while five compounds were detected only in Tinosporae radix. Furthermore, the contents of four alkaloids in Tinosporae radix were significantly higher than those in its adulterant, Fibraurea caulis.

Conclusion: The five unique ingredients in Tinosporae radix can be used as a better indicator for distinguishing the pieces of Tinosporae radix and Fibraurea caulis. The protoberberine alkaloid profile established in this study can be applied to quality evaluation of the two herbals or other herbals containing major protoberberine alkaloids.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pca.3054DOI Listing
April 2021

Prediction With Unpredictable Feature Evolution.

IEEE Trans Neural Netw Learn Syst 2021 Apr 16;PP. Epub 2021 Apr 16.

Learning with feature evolution studies the scenario where the features of the data streams can evolve, i.e., old features vanish and new features emerge. Its goal is to keep the model always performing well even when the features happen to evolve. To tackle this problem, canonical methods assume that the old features will vanish simultaneously and the new features themselves will emerge simultaneously as well. They also assume that there is an overlapping period where old and new features both exist when the feature space starts to change. However, in reality, the feature evolution could be unpredictable, which means that the features can vanish or emerge arbitrarily, causing the overlapping period incomplete. In this article, we propose a novel paradigm: prediction with unpredictable feature evolution (PUFE) where the feature evolution is unpredictable. To address this problem, we fill the incomplete overlapping period and formulate it as a new matrix completion problem. We give a theoretical bound on the least number of observed entries to make the overlapping period intact. With this intact overlapping period, we leverage an ensemble method to take the advantage of both the old and new feature spaces without manually deciding which base models should be incorporated. Theoretical and experimental results validate that our method can always follow the best base models and, thus, realize the goal of learning with feature evolution.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/TNNLS.2021.3071311DOI Listing
April 2021

Subtype-associated epigenomic landscape and 3D genome structure in bladder cancer.

Genome Biol 2021 Apr 15;22(1):105. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, Feinberg School of Medicine Northwestern University, Chicago, IL, USA.

Muscle-invasive bladder cancers are characterized by their distinct expression of luminal and basal genes, which could be used to predict key clinical features such as disease progression and overall survival. Transcriptionally, FOXA1, GATA3, and PPARG are shown to be essential for luminal subtype-specific gene regulation and subtype switching, while TP63, STAT3, and TFAP2 family members are critical for regulation of basal subtype-specific genes. Despite these advances, the underlying epigenetic mechanisms and 3D chromatin architecture responsible for subtype-specific regulation in bladder cancer remain unknown. RESULT: We determine the genome-wide transcriptome, enhancer landscape, and transcription factor binding profiles of FOXA1 and GATA3 in luminal and basal subtypes of bladder cancer. Furthermore, we report the first-ever mapping of genome-wide chromatin interactions by Hi-C in both bladder cancer cell lines and primary patient tumors. We show that subtype-specific transcription is accompanied by specific open chromatin and epigenomic marks, at least partially driven by distinct transcription factor binding at distal enhancers of luminal and basal bladder cancers. Finally, we identify a novel clinically relevant transcription factor, Neuronal PAS Domain Protein 2 (NPAS2), in luminal bladder cancers that regulates other subtype-specific genes and influences cancer cell proliferation and migration. CONCLUSION: In summary, our work identifies unique epigenomic signatures and 3D genome structures in luminal and basal urinary bladder cancers and suggests a novel link between the circadian transcription factor NPAS2 and a clinical bladder cancer subtype.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13059-021-02325-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8048365PMC
April 2021

RNA-Associated Co-expression Network Identifies Novel Biomarkers for Digestive System Cancer.

Front Genet 2021 26;12:659788. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

School of Applied Chemistry and Biological Technology, Shenzhen Polytechnic, Shenzhen, China.

Cancers of the digestive system are malignant diseases. Our study focused on colon cancer, esophageal cancer (ESCC), rectal cancer, gastric cancer (GC), and rectosigmoid junction cancer to identify possible biomarkers for these diseases. The transcriptome data were downloaded from the TCGA database (The Cancer Genome Atlas Program), and a network was constructed using the WGCNA algorithm. Two significant modules were found, and coexpression networks were constructed. CytoHubba was used to identify hub genes of the two networks. GO analysis suggested that the network genes were involved in metabolic processes, biological regulation, and membrane and protein binding. KEGG analysis indicated that the significant pathways were the calcium signaling pathway, fatty acid biosynthesis, and pathways in cancer and insulin resistance. Some of the most significant hub genes were , , , , and and , , , , and , respectively. These genes were predicted to be associated with the tumor prognostic reference for this patient population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2021.659788DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8033200PMC
March 2021

Electronic and optical properties of tapered tetrahedral semiconductor nanocrystals.

Nanotechnology 2021 Apr 30;32(29). Epub 2021 Apr 30.

Key Laboratory of Automobile Materials of MOE and College of Materials Science and Engineering, Jilin University, Changchun 130012, People's Republic of China.

The quantum confinement effect resulting from size reduction drastically alters the electronic structure and optical properties of optoelectronic materials. Quantum confinement in nanomaterials can be efficiently controlled by morphology variation combined characteristics of nanomaterials, such as their size, shape, and spatial organization. In this study, considering indium arsenide (InAs) in tetrahedral semiconductors as an example, we demonstrated the controllable morphology evolution of InAs nanostructures by tuning the growth conditions. We used the atomistic pseudopotential method to investigate the morphology-dependent electronic and optical properties of InAs nanostructures: tapered and uniform nanostructures, including the absorption spectra, single-particle energy levels, distribution and overlap integral of band-edge states, and exciton binding energies. Compared with uniform nanomaterials, a weaker quantum confinement effect was observed in the tapered nanomaterials, because of which tapered InAs nanostructures have a smaller bandgap, larger separation of photoinduced carriers, and smaller exciton binding energy. The absorption spectra of InAs nanostructures also exhibit strong morphology dependence. Our results indicate that morphology engineering can be exploited as a potential approach for modulating the electronic and optoelectronic properties of nanomaterials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1361-6528/abf68fDOI Listing
April 2021

Prodrugs of a 1'-CN-4-Aza-7,9-dideazaadenosine -Nucleoside Leading to the Discovery of Remdesivir (GS-5734) as a Potent Inhibitor of Respiratory Syncytial Virus with Efficacy in the African Green Monkey Model of RSV.

J Med Chem 2021 04 9;64(8):5001-5017. Epub 2021 Apr 9.

Gilead Sciences, Inc., 333 Lakeside Drive, Foster City, California 94404, United States.

A discovery program targeting respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) identified -nucleoside (RSV A2 EC = 530 nM) as a phenotypic screening lead targeting the RSV RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). Prodrug exploration resulted in the discovery of remdesivir (, GS-5734) that is >30-fold more potent than against RSV in HEp-2 and NHBE cells. Metabolism studies in vitro confirmed the rapid formation of the active triphosphate metabolite, -, and in vivo studies in cynomolgus and African Green monkeys demonstrated a >10-fold higher lung tissue concentration of following molar normalized IV dosing of compared to that of . A once daily 10 mg/kg IV administration of in an African Green monkey RSV model demonstrated a >2-log reduction in the peak lung viral load. These early data following the discovery of supported its potential as a novel treatment for RSV prior to its development for Ebola and approval for COVID-19 treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jmedchem.1c00071DOI Listing
April 2021

The small protein MafG plays a critical role in MC3T3-E1 cell apoptosis induced by simulated microgravity and radiation.

Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2021 May 2;555:175-181. Epub 2021 Apr 2.

The Key Laboratory of Aerospace Medicine, Ministry of Education, Air Force Medical University, 710032, Xi'an, Shaanxi, China. Electronic address:

Microgravity and radiation exposure-induced bone damage is one of the most significant alterations in astronauts after long-term spaceflight. However, the underlying mechanism is still largely unknown. Recent ground-based simulation studies have suggested that this impairment is likely mediated by increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during spaceflight. The small Maf protein MafG is a basic-region leucine zipper-type transcription factor, and it globally contributes to regulation of antioxidant and metabolic networks. Our research investigated the role of MafG in the process of apoptosis induced by simulated microgravity and radiation in MC3T3-E1 cells. We found that simulated microgravity or radiation alone decreased MafG expression and elevated apoptosis in MC3T3-E1 cells, and combined simulated microgravity and radiation treatment aggravated apoptosis. Meanwhile, under normal conditions, increased ROS levels facilitated apoptosis and downregulated the expression of MafG in MC3T3-E1 cells. Overexpression of MafG decreased apoptosis induced by simulated microgravity and radiation. These findings provide new insight into the mechanism of bone damage induced by microgravity and radiation during space flight.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbrc.2021.03.133DOI Listing
May 2021

Comorbidities and functional impairments in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in China: a hospital-based retrospective cross-sectional study.

BMJ Open 2021 Mar 22;11(3):e042196. Epub 2021 Mar 22.

Department of Child and Adolescent Healthcare, Children's Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou, China

Objectives: The aim of this study was to assess comorbidity patterns and functional impairment in children with and without attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Design: Hospital-based retrospective cross-sectional study; data collection occurred between 2016 and 2019.

Settings And Patients: A total of 8256 children and adolescents, 6-17 years of age, with suspected ADHD agreed to participate in this hospital-based cross-sectional study over a 4-year period in China. Comorbidities and social functions were assessed according to the scales Vanderbilt ADHD Diagnostic Parent Rating Scale and Weiss Functional Impairment Rating Scale-Parent Form, which were completed by the parents of the study participants.

Results: Of the 8256 children, 5640 were diagnosed with ADHD. Other 2616 children who did not meet the ADHD diagnostic criteria were classified as the N-ADHD group . The proportion of comorbidities (47.4%) and functional impairments (84.5%) in the ADHD group were higher than the N-ADHD group (p≤0.001). The functional impairment scores in all of the six domains, including family, academic, life skills, self-concept, social activities and risky activities, were significantly higher in the ADHD group than the N-ADHD group (p≤0.001). The functional impairment in ADHD group with comorbidities was more severe than those without comorbidities (p≤0.001). Comorbidities and core symptoms both can affect the functions of children with ADHD. Logistics regression analysis indicated that in all of the six functional domains, the effect of comorbidities on functional impairment exceeded the effects of ADHD core symptoms.

Conclusions: Comorbidities had the greatest influence on different areas of adaptive functioning in children with ADHD. Clinical management of children suspected to have ADHD should address multiple comorbidities and functional impairments assessment, as well as core symptom analysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2020-042196DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7986753PMC
March 2021

The Novel Key Genes of Non-obstructive Azoospermia Affect Spermatogenesis: Transcriptomic Analysis Based on RNA-Seq and scRNA-Seq Data.

Front Genet 2021 26;12:608629. Epub 2021 Feb 26.

Department of Emergency Laboratory, Clinical Laboratory Medical Center, Shenzhen Hospital, Southern Medical University, Shenzhen, China.

Non-obstructive azoospermia (NOA) is one of the most important causes of male infertility. It is mainly characterized by the absence of sperm in semen repeatedly or the number of sperm is small and not fully developed. At present, its pathogenesis remains largely unknown. The goal of this study is to identify hub genes that might affect biomarkers related to spermatogenesis. Using the clinically significant transcriptome and single-cell sequencing data sets on the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database, we identified candidate hub genes related to spermatogenesis. Based on them, we performed Gene Ontology (GO) functional enrichment analysis, Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) enrichment pathway analyses, protein-protein interaction (PPI) network analysis, principal component analysis (PCA), cell cluster analysis, and pseudo-chronological analysis. We identified a total of 430 differentially expressed genes, of which three have not been reported related to spermatogenesis (C22orf23, TSACC, and TTC25), and the expression of these three hub genes was different in each type of sperm cells. The results of the pseudo-chronological analysis of the three hub genes indicated that TTC25 was in a low expression state during the whole process of sperm development, while the expression of C22orf23 had two fluctuations in the differentiating spermatogonia and late primary spermatocyte stages, and TSACC showed an upward trend from the spermatogonial stem cell stage to the spermatogenesis stage. Our research found that the three hub genes were different in the trajectory of sperm development, indicating that they might play important roles in different sperm cells. This result is of great significance for revealing the pathogenic mechanism of NOA and further research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2021.608629DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7959792PMC
February 2021

Clinical outcomes analysis of infertile women with unicornuate uterus in IVF-ET.

J Gynecol Obstet Hum Reprod 2021 Mar 13;50(7):102111. Epub 2021 Mar 13.

Reproductive Center, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, 7 Rehabilitation Street, Erqi District, Zhengzhou, 450000, China. Electronic address:

Purpose: To explore the pregnancy outcomes, and neonatal status, arising from embryo transfer in unicornual uterine infertility patients.

Methods: We analyzed 2499 cycles of clinical data from in vitro fertilization/intracytoplasmic sperm injection-embryo transfer (IVF/ICSI-ET) from 1st May 2016 to 1st May 2018 in the Reproductive Center of the Third Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, including 109 women with unicornuate uterus (the observation group) and 2390 women with normally shaped uterus (the control group).

Results: There were no significant differences in embryo implantation rate, clinical pregnancy rate or miscarriage rate (41.88 % VS 42.36 %, P = 0.904; 48.62 % VS 55.94 %, P = 0.133; 11.01 % VS 8.99 %, P = 0.474) between the two groups. The live birth rate in the observation group was lower than that in the control group (35.78 % VS 45.82 %, P = 0.040). The fetal birth weight of the observation group was lower than that of the control group among single-born live births (3009.12 ± 430.59 g VS 3413.40 ± 492.25 g, P = 0.017), but the differences were not observed in the sex ratio at birth, premature birth rate, low birth weight infant (LBW) rate and macrosomia rate (P > 0.05). The fetal birth weight of the observation group was lower than that of the control group among twins live births (2480.00 ± 190.32 g VS 2606.02 ± 471.59 g), but the difference between the groups did not reach statistical significance (P > 0.05).Logistic regression analysis showed that age, number of embryos transplanted and uterine morphology were independent influencing factors of live birth.

Conclusion: Compared with women with normal uterus, the live birth rate of women with unicornuate uterus is low, and the birth weight of newborns with single birth is reduced.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jogoh.2021.102111DOI Listing
March 2021

Fates of heavy organics of bio-oil in hydrotreatment: The key challenge in the way from biomass to biofuel.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Mar 9;778:146321. Epub 2021 Mar 9.

Faculty of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran. Electronic address:

Heavy organics in bio-oil generally refer to the sugar oligomers and lignin-derivatives. They are important fractions in bio-oil and their effective conversion in hydrotreatment determines carbon yield from biomass or bio-oil to biofuel. Fates of the heavy organics largely determine intrinsic reaction behaviors of bio-oil during hydrotreatment. The heavy organics in bio-oil have high tendency towards polymerization upon thermal treatment, which is one of the main precursors for coke formation and catalyst deactivation. Furthermore, the heavy organics have some other unique characteristics in hydrotreatment such as the steric hindrance for contacting active sites on surface of catalyst. How to effectively convert the heavy organics has been regarded as the bottle-neck issue in hydrotreatment of bio-oil and the key barrier in the roadmap from biomass to biofuels. Thus, this review particularly focuses on the progress in understanding reaction behaviors of the heavy organics in hydrotreatment of bio-oil, a central challenge to be resolved. The results indicated that coke formation from heavy organics in bio-oil remains main obstacle in hydrotreatment and further fundamental studies are required to develop suitable catalyst and process to stabilize the heavy organics in bio-oil. In particular, the mechanism for coke formation from the heavy species of varied chemical family should be clarified and corresponding measures should be developed to tackle high tendency of coking. Techno-economic feasibility should be considered in the first place in development of catalysts or process for tackling the heavy fractions of bio-oil.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.146321DOI Listing
March 2021

Identification of Somatic Structural Variants in Solid Tumors by Optical Genome Mapping.

J Pers Med 2021 Feb 18;11(2). Epub 2021 Feb 18.

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, Hershey, PA 17033, USA.

Genomic structural variants comprise a significant fraction of somatic mutations driving cancer onset and progression. However, such variants are not readily revealed by standard next-generation sequencing. Optical genome mapping (OGM) surpasses short-read sequencing in detecting large (>500 bp) and complex structural variants (SVs) but requires isolation of ultra-high-molecular-weight DNA from the tissue of interest. We have successfully applied a protocol involving a paramagnetic nanobind disc to a wide range of solid tumors. Using as little as 6.5 mg of input tumor tissue, we show successful extraction of high-molecular-weight genomic DNA that provides a high genomic map rate and effective coverage by optical mapping. We demonstrate the system's utility in identifying somatic SVs affecting functional and cancer-related genes for each sample. Duplicate/triplicate analysis of select samples shows intra-sample reliability but also intra-sample heterogeneity. We also demonstrate that simply filtering SVs based on a GRCh38 human control database provides high positive and negative predictive values for true somatic variants. Our results indicate that the solid tissue DNA extraction protocol, OGM and SV analysis can be applied to a wide variety of solid tumors to capture SVs across the entire genome with functional importance in cancer prognosis and treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jpm11020142DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7921992PMC
February 2021

A high-performance voltammetric methodology for the ultra-sensitive detection of riboflavin in food matrices based on graphene oxide-covered hollow MnO spheres.

Food Chem 2021 Aug 23;352:129368. Epub 2021 Feb 23.

College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Institute for Conservation and Utilization of Agro-Bioresources in Dabie Mountains & Henan Key Laboratory of Utilization of Non-Metallic Mineral in the South of Henan, Xinyang Normal University, Xinyang 464000, China; Guangxi Key Laboratory of Automatic Detecting Technology and Instruments, Guilin University of Electronic Technology, Guilin 541004, China; Culinary Science Key Laboratory of Sichuan Province, Sichuan Tourism University, Chengdu 610100, China; Fujian Key Laboratory of Agro-Products Quality and Safety, Institute of Quality Standards Testing Technology for Agro-Products, Fujian Academy of Agricultural Science, Fuzhou 350013, China. Electronic address:

A high-performance voltammetric methodology was developed to achieve ultra-sensitive detection of riboflavin, employing an electrode modified by graphene oxide-covered hollow MnO spheres nanocomposite with high catalytic activity, large surface area, and hierarchical layered structure. Under the optimal conditions, the current responses of the oxidation peak located at -0.39 V showed a good linear relationship versus the concentration of riboflavin in the range of 1.0 nM-4.0 μM in acetate buffer (pH 5.4). The limit of detection was determined as 0.26 nM. Moreover, the proposed electrode exhibited high reproducibility (relative standard deviation of 1.7%, n = 10) and excellent stability (97.6% sensitivity within two months), which has been successfully applied to the quantification of riboflavin in complicated food matrices, with results in good accordance with those obtained by chromatography as a reference method, indicating it is an effective sensing platform for ultra-sensitive determination of riboflavin in practical applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2021.129368DOI Listing
August 2021

Halide Homogenization for High-Performance Blue Perovskite Electroluminescence.

Research (Wash D C) 2020 24;2020:9017871. Epub 2020 Dec 24.

Key Laboratory of Flexible Electronics (KLOFE) & Institute of Advanced Materials (IAM), Nanjing Tech University (NanjingTech), 30 South Puzhu Road, Nanjing 211816, China.

Metal halide perovskite light-emitting diodes (LEDs) have achieved great progress in recent years. However, bright and spectrally stable blue perovskite LED remains a significant challenge. Three-dimensional mixed-halide perovskites have potential to achieve high brightness electroluminescence, but their emission spectra are unstable as a result of halide phase separation. Here, we reveal that there is already heterogeneous distribution of halides in the as-deposited perovskite films, which can trace back to the nonuniform mixture of halides in the precursors. By simply introducing cationic surfactants to improve the homogeneity of the halides in the precursor solution, we can overcome the phase segregation issue and obtain spectrally stable single-phase blue-emitting perovskites. We demonstrate efficient blue perovskite LEDs with high brightness, e.g., luminous efficacy of 4.7, 2.9, and 0.4 lm W and luminance of over 37,000, 9,300, and 1,300 cd m for sky blue, blue, and deep blue with Commission Internationale de l'Eclairage (CIE) coordinates of (0.068, 0.268), (0.091, 0.165), and (0.129, 0.061), respectively, suggesting real promise of perovskites for LED applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.34133/2020/9017871DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7877380PMC
December 2020

Conditioned Media of Choroid Plexus Epithelium Cells Attenuates High Pi-Induced Calcification of MOVAS Cells by Inhibiting ROS-Mediated Signal Pathways.

Front Physiol 2021 5;12:607739. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Department of Rehabilitation, Tai'an City Central Hospital, Tai'an, China.

Vascular calcification was an independent risk of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases (CCDs). Studies reported that conditioned media of choroid plexus epithelium cells (CPECs-CM) showed potential neuroprotective effects. However, the protective effect of CPECs-CM against vascular calcification (VC) has not been reported yet. Herein, high phosphate (HPi)-induced calcification model in mouse aortic vascular smooth muscle cells (MOVAS) was established, and the protective effects and underlying mechanism of CPECs-CM against HPi-induced calcification were explored. The results indicated that CPEC cells were successfully isolated and cultured, and CPECs-CM co-treatment significantly inhibited HPi-induced calcification of MOVAS cells through blocking alkaline phosphatase activity and expression. CPECs-CM co-treatment also suppressed reactive oxide species-mediated DNA damage in HPi-treated MOVAS cells. Moreover, dysfunction of MAPKs and PI3K/AKT pathways both contributed to HPi-induced calcification of MOVAS cells, and CPECs-CM co-treatment attenuated HPi-induced calcification by normalizing MAPKs and PI3K/AKT expression. Taken together, our findings provide evidence that CPECs-CM had the potential to inhibit vascular calcification with potent application in chemoprevention and chemotherapy of human CCD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fphys.2021.607739DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7892975PMC
February 2021

Deciphering the dynamic gene expression patterns of pollen abortion in a male sterile line of Avena sativa through transcriptome analysis at different developmental stages.

BMC Plant Biol 2021 Feb 18;21(1):101. Epub 2021 Feb 18.

Crop Germplasms Resources Research Institute, Shanxi Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Taiyuan, China.

Background: Male sterility (MS) has important applications in hybrid seed production, and the abortion of anthers has been observed in many plant species. While most studies have focused on the genetic factors affecting male sterility, the dynamic gene expression patterns of pollen abortion in male sterile lines have not been fully elucidated. In addition, there is still no hybrid oat that is commercially planted due to the lack of a suitable system of male sterility for hybrid breeding.

Results: In this study, we cultivated a male sterile oat line and a near-isogenic line by crossbreeding to elucidate the expression patterns of genes that may be involved in sterility. The first reported CA male sterile (CAMS) oat line was used for cross-testing and hybridization experiments and was confirmed to exhibit a type of nuclear sterility controlled by recessive genes. Oat stamens of two lines were sampled at four different developmental stages separately. Paired-end RNA sequencing was performed for each sample and generated 252.84 Gb sequences. There were 295,462 unigenes annotated in public databases in all samples, and we compared the histological characteristics and transcriptomes of oat stamens from the two oat lines at different developmental stages. Our results demonstrate that the sterility of the male sterile oat line occurs in the early stage of stamen development and is primarily attributable to abnormal meiosis and the excessive accumulation of superoxide.

Conclusions: To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to decipher the dynamic expression profiles of pollen abortion CAMS and CA male fertile (CAMF) oat lines, which may represent a valuable resource for further studies attempting to understand pollen abortion and anther development in oats.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12870-021-02881-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7893748PMC
February 2021

The combined effects of simulated microgravity and X-ray radiation on MC3T3-E1 cells and rat femurs.

NPJ Microgravity 2021 Feb 15;7(1). Epub 2021 Feb 15.

The Key Laboratory of Aerospace Medicine, Ministry of Education, Air Force Medical University, Xi'an, Shaanxi, China.

Microgravity is well-known to induce Osteopenia. However, the combined effects of microgravity and radiation that commonly exist in space have not been broadly elucidated. This research investigates the combined effects on MC3T3-E1 cells and rat femurs. In MC3T3-E1 cells, simulated microgravity and X-ray radiation, alone or combination, show decreased cell activity, increased apoptosis rates by flow cytometric analysis, and decreased Runx2 and increased Caspase-3 mRNA and protein expressions. In rat femurs, simulated microgravity and X-ray radiation, alone or combination, show increased bone loss by micro-CT test and Masson staining, decreased serum BALP levels and Runx2 mRNA expressions, and increased serum CTX-1 levels and Caspase-3 mRNA expressions. The strongest effect is observed in the combined group in MC3T3-E1 cells and rat femurs. These findings suggest that the combination of microgravity and radiation exacerbates the effects of either treatment alone on MC3T3-E1 cells and rat femurs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41526-021-00131-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7884416PMC
February 2021

Clinical study of heparin combined with aspirin in the treatment of thromboembolism and its effect on pregnancy outcomes.

Minerva Med 2021 Feb 8. Epub 2021 Feb 8.

Department of Obstetrics, Maternal and Child Health Care Hospital of Dongchangfu District, Liaocheng, China -

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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S0026-4806.20.07236-5DOI Listing
February 2021

Vitamin C supplementation is necessary for patients with coronavirus disease: An ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry finding.

J Pharm Biomed Anal 2021 Mar 27;196:113927. Epub 2021 Jan 27.

Shanghai Public Health Clinical Center, Fudan University, Shanghai 201508, China. Electronic address:

To administer vitamin C (VC) with precision to patients with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), we developed an ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS) method to assess plasma VC concentrations. 31 patients with COVID-19 and 51 healthy volunteers were enrolled. VC stability was evaluated in blood, plasma, and precipitant-containing stabilizers. A proportion of 7.7 % of VC was degraded in blood at room temperature (RT) (approximately 20-25 °C) at 1.5 h post administration with respect to the proportion degraded at 0.5 h, but without statistical difference. VC was stable in plasma for 0.75 h at RT, 2 h at 4 °C, 5 days at -40 °C, and 4 h in precipitant-containing stabilizer (2 % oxalic acid) at RT. The mean plasma concentration of VC in patients with COVID-19 was 2.00 mg/L (0.5-4.90) (n = 8), which was almost 5-fold lower than that in healthy volunteers (9.23 mg/L (3.09. 35.30)) (n = 51). After high-dose VC treatment, the mean VC concentration increased to 13.46 mg/L (3.93. 34.70) (n = 36), higher than that in healthy volunteers, and was within the normal range (6-20 mg/L). In summary, we developed a simple UPLC-MS/MS method to quantify VC in plasma, and determined the duration for which the sample remained stable. VC levels in patients with COVID-19 were considerably low, and supplementation at 100 mg/kg/day is considered highly essential.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpba.2021.113927DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7839397PMC
March 2021

ATF3 drives senescence by reconstructing accessible chromatin profiles.

Aging Cell 2021 03 4;20(3):e13315. Epub 2021 Feb 4.

The MOE Key Laboratory of Cell Proliferation and Differentiation, School of Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing, China.

Chromatin organization and transcriptional profiles undergo tremendous reordering during senescence. However, uncovering the regulatory mechanisms between chromatin reconstruction and gene expression in senescence has been elusive. Here, we depicted the landscapes of both chromatin accessibility and gene expression to reveal gene regulatory networks in human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) senescence and found that chromatin accessibilities are redistributed during senescence. Particularly, the intergenic chromatin was massively shifted with the increased accessibility regions (IARs) or decreased accessibility regions (DARs), which were mainly enhancer elements. We defined AP-1 transcription factor family as being responsible for driving chromatin accessibility reconstruction in IARs, where low DNA methylation improved binding affinity of AP-1 and further increased the chromatin accessibility. Among AP-1 transcription factors, we confirmed ATF3 was critical to reconstruct chromatin accessibility to promote cellular senescence. Our results described a dynamic landscape of chromatin accessibility whose remodeling contributes to the senescence program, we identified that AP-1 was capable of reorganizing the chromatin accessibility profile to regulate senescence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/acel.13315DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7963335PMC
March 2021

Identification of Oil Produced from Shale and Tight Reservoirs in the Permian Lucaogou Shale Sequence, Jimsar Sag, Junggar Basin, NW China.

ACS Omega 2021 Jan 14;6(3):2127-2142. Epub 2021 Jan 14.

PetroChina, Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration & Development, Beijing 100083, China.

The Permian Lucaogou Formation of the Jimsar Sag in the Junggar Basin, NW China, is one of the largest areas of oil exploration and exploitation in the lacustrine shale sequence in China. Oil is commercially extracted from this markedly heterogeneous formation, which is characterized by frequently interbedded shale and tight reservoirs, although producible intervals within the Lucaogou Formation remain unresolved. This study focused on the Jimsar Sag reservoirs to investigate petrological and mineralogical characteristics, source rock and reservoir physical properties, and the molecular biogeochemistry of core extracts and crude oils. The -C/-C and Pr/-C ratios of two-step ultrasonic extracts were applied to infer whether the oil is produced from shale or tight reservoirs, taking into account solvent polarity, molecular characteristics of -alkanes and isoprenoids, and physical properties of the reservoir. The experimental results indicated that the shallower pay zone is mainly produced from tight reservoirs, while in deeper zone with organic-matter maturity above 1.0%, some of the oil is produced from shale. The reservoir properties in organic-rich shale with vitrinite reflectance (Ro) exceeding 1.0% are improved by pore interconnectivity, and oil mobility is enhanced by high gas/oil ratios, which favors production of free-phase hydrocarbons. Such zones may become major prospects for shale oil exploration and production. The results of the present study can potentially apply to sweet-spot identification and development optimization for the Lucaogou shale and other lacustrine shale sequences.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsomega.0c05224DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7841958PMC
January 2021

Genetic analysis of maize shank length by QTL mapping in three recombinant inbred line populations.

Plant Sci 2021 Feb 22;303:110767. Epub 2020 Nov 22.

College of Biological Science and Technology, Liaoning Province Research Center of Plant Genetic Engineering Technology, Shenyang Key Laboratory of Maize Genomic Selection Breeding, Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang, 110866, China. Electronic address:

In maize, the shank is a unique tissue linking the stem to the ear. Shank length (SL) mainly affects the transport of photosynthetic products to the ear and the dehydration of kernels via regulated husk morphology. The limited studies on SL revealed it is a highly heritable quantitative trait controlled by significant additive and additive-dominance effects. However, the genetic basis of SL remains unclear. In this study, we analyzed three maize recombinant inbred line (RIL) populations to elucidate the molecular mechanism underlying the SL. The data indicated the SL varied among the three RIL populations and was highly heritable. Additionally, the SL was positively correlated with the husk length (HL), husk number (HN), ear length (EL), and ear weight (EW) in the BY815/K22 (BYK) and CI7/K22 (CIK) RIL populations, but was negatively correlated with the husk width (HW) in the BYK RIL population. Moreover, 10 quantitative trait loci (QTL) for SL were identified in the three RIL populations, five of which were large-effect QTL. The percentage of the total phenotypic variation explained by the QTL for SL was 13.67 %, 20.45 %, and 30.81 % in the BY815/DE3 (BYD), BYK, and CIK RIL populations, respectively. Further analyses uncovered some genetic overlap between SL and EL, SL and ear row number (ERN), SL and cob weight (CW), and SL and HN. Unlike the large-effect QTL qSL BYK-2-2, which spanned the centromere, the other four large-effect QTL were delimited to a single peak bin via bin map. Furthermore, 2, 5, 6, and 12 genes associated with SL were identified for qSL BYK-2-1, qSL CIK-2-1, qSL CIK-9-1, and qSL CIK-9-2, respectively. Five of the candidate genes for SL may contribute to the hormone metabolism and sphingolipid biosynthesis regulating cell elongation, division, differentiation, and expansion. These results may be relevant for future studies on the genetic basis of SL and for the molecular breeding of maize based on marker-assisted selection to develop new varieties with an ideal SL.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.plantsci.2020.110767DOI Listing
February 2021